Scientist gives away £865k fortune she received for creating life-saving cancer drug

A SCIENTIST who dedicated her life’s work to curing cancer has vowed to give away her £865,000 fortune – because she doesn’t “need the money”.

Professor Nicola Curtin and her team at Newcastle University are the geniuses behind Rubraca – a new ovarian cancer drug that will be available through prescription on the NHS.

Professor Curtin amassed a fortune of £865,000 for helping to create the life-saving drug, after working tirelessly since 1982 to find a way to destroy malignant tumours.

And now the selfless scientist – whose team netted a whopping £31 million in royalties – is using her share of the cash to transform the lives of disadvantaged people by helping them back into work or training.

As such, she has created The Curtin PARP (Passionate About Realising your Potential) Fund at the Community Foundation. The foundation is named after PARP, a protein in cells that helps damaged DNA repair itself – a key problem that the new drug helps to block.

Nicola, 65 from Gosforth in Newcastle, said: “I don’t need the money. Maybe I could buy another house but that’s another one to clean.

I live modestly. My daughter thinks the fund is a great idea.

“Like most scientists, it’s not the money that drives me, it’s the intellectual challenge and buzz I get from finding something out before anyone else.”

Chief Philanthropy Officer at the Community Fund, Sandra King, said: “Her generosity is incredible – a truly inspiring philanthropist who should be recognised for her generous contribution to society

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